Armenian prime minister says Russia failed to supply prepaid arms deliveries, proposes debt reduction instead

Nov 24 2023
5:47 pm,
Source: Meduza

Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said that Armenia had paid Russia “millions of dollars” for arms supplies as part of a bilateral contract, but has not yet received any.

Pashinyan said he realizes that Russia “needs arms itself” now, and suggested that the issue of arms supplies can be solved in a variety of ways, including the reduction of Armenia’s debt to Russia.

In May, the Secretary for the Armenian Security Council, Armen Grigoryan, said that Russia hadn’t supplied the weapons for which Armenia had already paid. Russia has not officially reported any recent military contracts with Armenia.

On November 22, the Armenian newspaper Zhogorvud referenced sources who said that the contract was for the delivery of Smerch missiles and that it was signed several years ago. According to the newspaper, the missiles were ready prior to Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine. The Russian side reportedly offered to take the weapons out of the warehouses on three different occasions, but Armenia did not do so. After the start of the full-scale invasion, Russia started using the missiles itself.

World Court: Azerbaijan must let ethnic Armenians return to Nagorno-Karabakh – Reuters

Armenian Prime Minister meets with US Assistant Secretary of State


YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 10, ARMENPRESS.  Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan received, at his temporary residence in Paris, the US Assistant Secretary of State James O'Brien, the PM's Office said in a statement.
''The PM emphasized the US’ role in the Armenia-Azerbaijan peace process, and stressed its continuity.
Prime Minister Pashinyan referred to the "Crossroads of Peace" project of the Armenian government and added that the unblocking of regional transport infrastructures should take place based on the principles of sovereignty, jurisdiction, reciprocity and equality.
 During the meeting the PM touched upon the humanitarian problems of more than 100,000 forcibly displaced persons of Nagorno-Karabakh as a result of Azerbaijan's ethnic cleansing policy, as well as the steps taken by the Armenian government to overcome them,'' reads the statement.

Ukraine ambassador to Azerbaijan makes another anti-Armenian statement, Armenia
Nov 8 2023

Vladyslav Kanevskyi, the Ambassador of Ukraine to Azerbaijan, has made another anti-Armenian statement.

This Ukrainian "diplomat" issued congratulations on Azerbaijan’s "Victory Day" in a post on Facebook, and praised the Azerbaijani people and authorities.

Among other things, Kanevskyi wrote as follows: "At that time, Ukrainians, standing shoulder to shoulder with Azerbaijanis, defeated the enemy, and today ethnic Azerbaijanis defend the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine on the battlefield."

The quote is presented as written, and it appears to suggest that "Once upon a time, Ukrainians stood shoulder to shoulder with Azerbaijanis and defeated the enemy, and today, ethnic Azerbaijanis defend Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity on the battlefield."

Although this "enemy" is not directly mentioned in the post, it is obvious that it is about the Armenians—taking into account the date of the congratulation.

But this is not the first time when the ambassador of Ukraine to Azerbaijan indulges in anti-Armenian demarches. Last year, the Ukrainian embassy in Baku published an entire video praising Azerbaijan's aggression against Armenians.

On the Ukrainian ambassador's Facebook page, there is also a statement by the Ukrainian community on Tuesday, with congratulations and joy in connection with the Azerbaijani occupation of Shushi, Hadrut, and all other settlements of Nagorno-Karabakh.

Armenpress: Number of tourists visiting Armenia increased by more than 48 percent compared to last year

 21:03, 6 November 2023

YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 6, ARMENPRESS.  According to the information provided by the Statistical Committee of the Republic of Armenia, in January-September of the current year, 1 million 839 thousand 4 foreign tourists visited Armenia, compared to 1 million 239 thousand 394 people last year.

'The rise amounted to 48.4%, according to the National Statistical Committee.

The bulk were from Russia (931 thousand 695 people or 50 7% of the total), Georgia (185 thousand 82 people or 10.1%,) and Iran (116 thousand 62 people or 6.3%).

ANCA-WR, Local Chapters Hold Roundtable Discussion with Assemblymember Jesse Gabriel

LOS ANGELES–The Armenian National Committee of America–Western Region and its local chapters participated in a roundtable discussion on October 19 with Assemblymember Jesse Gabriel, who serves as Chair of the California Legislative Jewish Caucus and is a distinguished member of the California Armenian Legislative Caucus.

Assemblymember Gabriel represents District 46, which encompasses the vibrant West San Fernando Valley, including areas like Van Nuys, Encino, Tarzana, Canoga Park, Woodland Hills, and Calabasas—a region home to a substantial Armenian-American population.

The roundtable discussion offered a platform to delve into pressing issues confronting the local Armenian-American community within District 46 and beyond, including the humanitarian crisis faced by Artsakh refugees in Armenia as a result of Azerbaijan’s ethnic cleansing of over 100,000 people in late September 2023, the propagation of Armenophobia and anti-Armenian misinformation campaigns in online spaces, and the pivotal strengthening of the partnership between Armenia (especially Syunik province) and California.

Assemblymember Gabriel expressed his unwavering support and solidarity with the Armenian-American community and reaffirmed his commitment to champion their cause. On the local side, Gabriel also spoke with Armenian community representatives about pressing issues, including homelessness, the rise in property crimes, and public safety issues.

A staunch advocate for the California State Nonprofit Security Grant Program, Assemblymember Gabriel’s efforts have provided Armenian-American institutions such as schools, churches, and community service organizations with crucial funding to bolster their security measures.

In addition to this initiative, Gabriel addressed the concerning proliferation of hate and misinformation in online spaces, a challenge the Armenian community has grappled with since the onset of Azerbaijan’s illegal invasion of Artsakh in 2020. Addressing this concern, he authored AB 587, a pioneering bill that seeks to shield internet users from hate speech and misinformation by mandating social media platforms to publicly disclose their community guidelines and standards— a vital step toward creating safer online spaces.

The community led by ANCA WR local chapter leader Garo Kamarian expressed gratitude to Assemblymember Gabriel for his leadership on matters crucial to the Armenian-American community. The roundtable discussion concluded with an engaging question and answer session, during which Assemblymember Gabriel addressed a variety of questions from the audience.

Participating organizations included representatives from the ANCA-WR, ANCA – San Fernando Valley West, ANCA North Valley, ANCA Pasadena, Armenian Youth Federation Sardarabad, Homenetmen Massis Chapter, ARF Rostom Chapter, ARF Arshavir Chapter, Hamazkayin Cultural Association Barouyr Sevag, Holy Martyrs Armenian Church, Holy Martyrs Ferrahian School, Armenian Relief Society, Armenian Relief Society Anahid Chapter, GALAS, Association of Istanbul Armenians, Armenian Missionary Association of America, AGBU Manoogian-Demirdjian School, AGBU Western Region, Armenian Assembly of America, and the Southern California Armenian Democrats.

The Armenian National Committee of America – Western Region is the largest and most influential Armenian-American grassroots advocacy organization in the Western United States. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters, and supporters throughout the Western United States and affiliated organizations around the country, the ANCA-WR advances the concerns of the Armenian-American community on a broad range of issues.

The Turkish Republic’s criminal legacy

This past Sunday, October 29, was a day of grand celebration for the Turkish nation. It was the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Turkish Republic, established by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk after the “war of independence.” Kemal had served in the Ottoman army in both eastern and western campaigns. He skillfully took advantage of the victorious allies’ confusion and duplicity to drive the “foreigners” out, eventually establishing the new Turkish Republic. Kemal was revered for his introduction of “democracy” to Turkey and the transition to secular institutions, in sharp contrast to his Ottoman predecessors. Pictures of Kemal adorned nearly every building and home in Turkey in reverence to the man they called “father of the Turks.” The West eventually warmed to the western-leaning Turkish nation, particularly during the post-World War II period, and Turkey joined NATO in 1952. Turkey also joined the U.N. coalition in the Korean War and enjoyed the support of the western alliance, which transformed Turkey’s military into a modern fighting unit. Turkey has earned deep friendships in the Pentagon and State Department, as it has received investments from the military industrial complex for serving as a buffer to the Soviet Union for decades. Despite its questionable loyalty to NATO under current President Recep Erdogan and its obstructionist role in Syria against United States interests, Turkey has been forgiven countless times, as it charts its own regional hegemony. Turkey has played both sides in the Ukraine war by circumventing western sanctions against Russia and attempting to serve as a self-serving broker between both sides.

The truth of the founding of the Turkish Republic is quite different from the romantic notion of a people fighting for their independence that Turkey has projected. The reality is that Ottoman Turkey was a defeated nation as a result of World War I and committed at least three genocides (Armenian, Assyrian and Greek) to further its warped vision.

Turkey has succeeded in winning powerful friends, but not everyone has been allured by its veneer. The truth of the founding of the Turkish Republic is quite different from the romantic notion of a people fighting for their independence that Turkey has projected. The reality is that Ottoman Turkey was a defeated nation as a result of World War I and committed at least three genocides (Armenian, Assyrian and Greek) to further its warped vision. Once the allies (primarily French and British) secured their mandate in the Middle East, they had no appetite to fight the Turks, who were allowed to brutally expel the western Greeks. The allies were apparently satisfied with their bounty and withdrew from Turkish territory. The Armenians are all too familiar with the treacherous French abandonment of Cilicia after using the Armenian Legion to secure the region and encouraging Genocide survivors to return. The Ataturk that the Armenians know committed atrocities in the villages of Cilicia, purging the region of its last Armenian inhabitants. A similar cleansing took place in the postwar period in the northern Pontus region, home to an indigenous Greek nation. Ataturk went about the business of completing what the Committee of Union and Progress, or Young Turks, had not finished. Troops under his command attacked the western borders of the young Armenian republic in 1920, forcing the capitulation of independence and the loss of Kars, Ardahan and Ararat. His murderous campaigns killed thousands of Greeks and Armenians as Smyrna (Izmir) burned.

The truth is that the Turkish Republic of 1923 was founded on the blood and wealth of millions of Christians native to Asia Minor and Anatolia. Turkish independence was far less about a people seeking freedom and more about purging the nation of non-Turks. In those decades, non-Turks were defined as Christians who were of the Armenian, Greek, Assyrian and Chaldean faiths. By the end of the first decade of the Turkish Republic, these centuries-old native communities were depopulated. What remained of the Armenian community slowly centered around the neighborhoods of Istanbul. The Armenian highlands were eerily silenced by the absence of an ancient indigenous culture. The completion of the Christian purge occurred on the watch of the “revered” Ataturk. Ataturk’s brutal methods against the innocent should never be confused with freedom fighting and civilized leadership. The Kurds, who were a prominent ethnic grouping in the east, particularly in the southeast, were subjected to overt attempts at cultural assimilation as they were officially referred to as “mountain Turks.” When these attempts failed, the Kurds were subjected to atrocities such as the Dersim massacres in the 1930s, which was covered up for decades by the Republic officials. 

Perhaps the most destructive legacy of the Turkish Republic, aside from the atrocities that led to its formation, is the institutional deception created by Ataturk and continued to this day. The Ittihads were the authors of genocide, and Kemal Ataturk continued their work by designing the coverup. In the post-genocide period, billions of dollars of the property and other forms of wealth of Armenians who had been murdered or deported were confiscated under the “abandonment” laws created by Kemal and redistributed for the resettlement of Turks, providing a financial foundation for the republic. Ataturk and his Republican colleagues were not only allowed to murder hundreds of thousands of Christians, but he also completed the robbery of their earthly possessions. 

Greek refugees mourning victims of the Smyrna massacres

The western world, having little interest in this unpunished act of barbarism and exhausted by war, moved on to a postwar environment. The United States, still in the infancy of becoming a world power, entered a period of isolationism by rejecting a U.S. mandate over Armenia, the Wilsonian mandate, and limiting its activity in these former war zones. Ataturk, under the cover of his westernization of Turkey into a secular “democracy,” commanded a virtual dictatorship that used pseudo-democratic institutions to legitimize his activities. The Armenian Genocide was a taboo topic in the Turkish Republic, and Armenians were portrayed as disloyal traitors to the Turkish nation. Turks would openly comment that the Genocide was justified based on Armenian behavior. These attitudes were embedded overtly and subtly by the educational system, creating an atmosphere of institutional discrimination manifested to this day. For example, although the Treaty of Lausanne guarantees the minorities in Turkey the freedom of religion, Turkey has closed for 50 years the only Armenian seminary and openly meddles in the affairs and the election of the Patriarch. In street vernacular, the word Armenian (Ermenie) is considered an insult. During a political campaign several years ago, former President Abdullah Gul was accused of having an Armenian mother. It was a “scandalous” tactic to put him on the defensive and discredit his career. This is the legacy of the Turkish Republic. We are all familiar with how Erdogan has been working to destroy not only any semblance of democracy but to push Turkey closer to an Islamic state. This would be a reversal of one of Ataturk’s legacies and has created significant division within Turkish society. His pan-Turkic fanaticism is displayed through his “one nation two states” platform with rogue Azerbaijan while promoting racism against Armenians. 

The criminal legacy of the Turkish Republic goes beyond genocide, confiscation and coverup. Children in Turkey learn a revisionist, distorted view of history that supports their denial. I came across a small but significant example this week. My wife and I are in Washington, D.C. attending a family wedding. Our plan was to stay a few extra days and enjoy the sights with my cousin and his wife from California. On Sunday, which happened to be Turkish Independence Day, we decided to have dinner at an Italian restaurant. Our waitress was a very pleasant young woman. She had a heavy accent that seemed Middle Eastern, so we asked where she was born. She replied that she was Turkish. After our meal, I wanted to engage in further dialogue with her. I asked where she was from, and she replied, “Izmir.” I asked her if she was familiar with its past as Smyrna. She politely replied that it was a long time ago when there were “rebels” in the area. I mentioned that many innocent people died, and she was puzzled and said the campaign was part of their independence war that they were celebrating on that day. I showed her a map on my phone and said my grandfather was from Sivas, and grandmother, from Adana. She seemed pleased, probably thinking we had something in common. At that point I asked her a question. “Why do you think we know so much about Turkey and its history? I can tell you we are not Turks or Greeks.” She didn’t respond, and I told her we are “Ermenie.” Her tone changed as her “education” kicked in. She told me that during that time there was a major problem with “disloyalty” and people left. She added that if we are interested in that era there is an “Ottoman restaurant” nearby. My wife, who was seething at this point, said we would not go there. Thus, we ended our Turkish Independence Day encounter. This young woman, a native of Izmir, is a 21st-century product of the corrupt Turkish education system as it relates to World War I and Armenians that continues teaching children lies and creates discriminatory attitudes. It started in Ataturk’s time and has continued in order to prevent the truth from enabling justice. The Azerbaijanis, who have stolen everything in their creation, have learned this propaganda technique from their cousins to the west. They openly teach hatred of Armenians to their young, copying the institutional discrimination policies that have existed in Turkey for a century.

If Turkey is truly ready – and I highly doubt it – to open a new beginning with Armenia, then it should start by peeling back the layers of lies. It will be challenging, because the layers have been professionally designed for decades. There can be little hope for a “normalization” as long as the educational system characterizes Armenians as “disloyal” or “rebellious” people not worthy of respect, or as long as Erdogan describes Armenians as “remnants of the sword,” or states that Turkey will finish what our “grandfathers started.” Signing a treaty with Turkey must be accompanied by systemic change to dismantle discriminatory policies and behavior. There is nothing “normal” about establishing relations with a country that has worked to diminish your presence on this earth and has designed an educational system to perpetuate the crime. In the meantime, their 100th anniversary will be celebrated with congratulatory rhetoric, but we know the truth. We will not be silenced.

Stepan was raised in the Armenian community of Indian Orchard, MA at the St. Gregory Parish. A former member of the AYF Central Executive and the Eastern Prelacy Executive Council, he also served many years as a delegate to the Eastern Diocesan Assembly. Currently , he serves as a member of the board and executive committee of the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR). He also serves on the board of the Armenian Heritage Foundation. Stepan is a retired executive in the computer storage industry and resides in the Boston area with his wife Susan. He has spent many years as a volunteer teacher of Armenian history and contemporary issues to the young generation and adults at schools, camps and churches. His interests include the Armenian diaspora, Armenia, sports and reading.

Apple threat alerts received by Armenian journalist imply wider global issue

The New Indian
Oct 31 2023


NEW DELHI: As Opposition MPs from different parties on Tuesday shared screenshots of alerts from iPhone maker Apple to posit claims of snooping by the Centre, additional information is surfacing from around the globe hinting at a bigger phenomenon all around.

Artur Papyan, a digital security and media consultant and the director of the Media Diversity Institute in Armenia, took to microblogging site, X, and shared screenshots of Apple issuing a new round of threat notifications about State Sponsored attacks on Armenia-based journalists.

He tweeted, “Apple has issued a new round of threat notifications about State Sponsored attacks. If you’re an Armenia-based journalist or a civil society representative, contact me, @Kornelij or @RubenMuradyan to get your device checked, as well as urgent advice and support.”

This comes just a few hours after opposition leaders like AAP MP Raghav Chadha, TMC MP Mahua Moitra, Congress MP Shashi Tharoor, and former UP CM Akhilesh Yadav shared their concerns about such similar notification received from Apple to buttress claims of spying by the Indian government.

Additionally, Samir Saran, the President of the Observer Research Foundation (ORF), expressed similar apprehensions by sharing the screenshots. Despite its origins with the Dhirubhai Ambani family, ORF asserts its independence in operations. The foundation has asserted that its financial resources come from various quarters, including the Reliance Group, government, foreign foundations, and other sources. It remains uncertain whether any competitive interests between the Adani and Ambani Groups are connected to the alleged breach of Saran’s iPhone.

The allegations arising from Armenia suggest a different scenario, which extends beyond mere allegations of the Indian government spying on opposition leaders.

READ MORE: Apple breach: Ex-UP CM Akhilesh, Raghav, ORF boss & Mahua claim state-sponsored attack

Artur, who shared the screenshot on X, has worked as a journalist and a multimedia editor with RFE/RL’s Armenian Service for more than a decade. In 2018, he co-founded and worked as the CEO of “Azatutyun TV” internet channel. Artur, in recent years, has taught online media, internet journalism, and professional ethics at several universities, including the Yerevan State University.

Armenpress: Eurowings to launch Yerevan-Berlin roundtrip flights


YEREVAN, OCTOBER 28, ARMENPRESS. Eurowings will launch Yerevan-Berlin roundtrip flights in May 2024, the Armenian Embassy in Germany has announced.

The embassy's discussions with Eurowings were conducted together with Berlin legislator Martin Petzold and   European and Armenian Professionals Association official Mikayel Minasyan, the Armenian Embassy said in a statement.

''Over the past few months, the Armenian Embassy in Germany, together with Member of the Berlin House of Representatives, Prof. Dr. Martin Petzold and European and Armenian Professionals Association official Mikayel Minasyan has had many discussions with Eurowings , aimed at including this route in the summer flight schedule.''

Flights can already be booked for May 31, 2024  at the following link: ։

Possible sanctions against Azerbaijan ‘on the table’ – Canadian FM says in Armenia


YEREVAN, OCTOBER 25, ARMENPRESS. Possible sanctions against Azerbaijan are now on the table and Canada is closely following the developments in South Caucasus, expecting Armenia’s territorial integrity to be respected, Canadian Foreign Minister Mélanie Joly said at a joint press conference with Armenian Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan in Yerevan.

“When it comes to sanctions, I’ve answered that question already, I said that everything is on the table, that being said, we expect that Armenia’s territorial integrity be respected, and for us this is definitely something that we are watching,” Joly said when asked whether Canada considers sanctions against Azerbaijan.

“Canada commends Armenia’s ongoing efforts to promote peace and stability within the region. But we all agree that more needs to be done. As part of our continued work, Canada calls for the full respect of the territorial integrity of Armenia and reaffirms the importance of the strict adherence to the principle of the non-use of force and threat of use of force. Canada also calls on the Azerbaijani government for the respect of the right of return of the recently displaced Armenians from Nagorno-Karabakh and to show good faith in facilitating the restoration of unimpeded humanitarian access to Nagorno-Karabakh for the safe return of ethnic Armenians,” the Canadian FM said.

Joly said Canada is working with partners to mitigate the impact of the “unjustifiable military action" on civilians.

Later on Wednesday, Joly will attend the opening of the Canadian embassy in Yerevan.

On October 26, she will visit Jermuk to become acquainted with the situation and meet forcibly displaced families.

Joly said that Canada is increasing its humanitarian assistance for the displaced persons of Nagorno-Karabakh to a total of 3,9 million dollars. This includes an additional 1 million dollars to the UNHCR and 2,5 million dollars to the ICRC to help meet the needs of the forcibly displaced persons of NK.